JUMP UP

Here’s a song by Elvis Costello. I learned about this song from an interview that Terri Gross did with Stephen Colbert a few years ago. So thanks to Stephen for introducing me to this song. And thanks to Elvis for writing it!

FEELIN' GOOD

Here’s a song by Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricuss. I, like many of you perhaps, first heard it from the great Ms. Nina Simone. Thank you so much to Anthony and Lesley for such a beautiful song that has been arranged and adapted in so many wonderful ways. Like all of these songs, I hope it continues to live on into the future for many years to come.

STUPID PREOCCUPATIONS

Here’s a song by Vic Chesnutt, yet another artist that was introduced to me by John Whitaker during my high school years. I hope I’ve honored this one well enough here. It’s an important song for me about what it means to be a songwriter. Here’s to Vic for all his wonderful music!

I BELIEVE IN YOU

Here’s a song by Frank Loesser from the musical How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. The lyrics have taken on such a different meaning for me as a father. The song appears twice in the film, once sung by Michele Lee and once by Robert Morse. The first is someone stating that they believe in someone else; the second is someone stating that they believe in themself. It’s always so wonderful to have people supporting you in your endeavors, but equally important to believe in yourself. Thanks for such a great song, Frank!

2009 DEMOS

I’ve decided to post all of the 2009 demos here instead of posting them one at a time. As much as I’d like to discuss them individually, I simply have other things to do at the moment. I’ll get the 2010 files up soon as well. If anyone has any questions about any of these please feel free to ask. Thanks!

PERFECT DAY

Here’s a song with music by Fred Rogers and lyrics by Josie Carey. I first heard it while watching the episode about Josephine the Short-Necked Giraffe. The story begins with this song being sung by a sunflower, a frog, and a tree. Apparently, Mr. Rogers originally wrote this story in French during his college years. Then, in the late 1960s, he also released an entire album with this story set to music, long before the TV episode I saw was ever released. Anyway, I just think it’s a happy little song so here it is. Thanks Fred & Josey!

SWEET SLUMBER

Here’s a song by Lucky Millinder, Al Neiburg, and Henri Woode. I first heard it a couple years ago on the album The Blues Is Now by Jimmy Witherspoon with Brother Jack McDuff. Really outstanding album. As a parent of two young children, this song continues to ring true in several different ways. Many thanks to Lucky, Al, and Henri for such a lovely creation.

IT'S A MIGHTY WORLD

Here’s a song by Odetta. This song means so much to me. I’m eternally grateful for its existence and to Odetta for introducing me to so many other wonderful songs as well. This song reminds me to enjoy life, marvel at the world around me, and remember that we’re all in this together. Thank you, Odetta. Thank you.

SO LONG IT'S BEEN GOOD TO KNOW YA

Here’s a song by Woody Guthrie. I remember helping to collect artifacts from his life while working in the Smithsonian Folkways archive about twenty years ago. They were putting together a new retrospective of his music and needed old photographs, letters, and so forth, which I was supposed to gather from the archive for the production team. I also worked on a project about Broadside Magazine that was really fascinating too. Folkways has many outstanding releases though. Check ‘em out! And thanks of course to Mr. Guthrie, as true a pioneer as there ever was.

With Every Heartbeat

Here’s a song by Robyn & Kleerup. I remember watching the video for this song in our apartment in Prague. I’ve been listening to Robyn’s music quite a bit lately in the car with Violet (she really likes Crash and Burn Girl). My deepest gratitude for such a wonderful song!

BLACK CAB

First and foremost, my apologies to Jens Lekman for so brazenly putting myself into this song. I have no right to do so and will certainly remove this if necessary. I’d sung it so many times with his name until one day I just started using mine. I’m a thief, I know. At least I’ve stolen something extremely valuable, at least to me. Thanks Jens (and sorry)!

BEAST IN ME

Here’s a song by Nick Lowe off his album The Impossible Bird. I first heard this song many years ago during the end credits of a Sopranos episode. We made a habit of rewatching a season every summer, but haven’t this year for whatever reason. There’s still time! Seriously though, many thanks to Nick Lowe for this song. It’s wonderful.